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Dongle users are set to benefit from a deal struck between Virgin Media Business and three of the UK's leading mobile broadband providers.

Virgin Media Business has been contracted to provide fibre connections to Everything Everywhere – the owner of Orange and T-Mobile's UK arms – and Three.

Under the terms of the £100 million, eight-year contract, cable telecoms giant Virgin will construct 14 regional aggregation networks across the UK running at 1Gb.

This should enable Orange, T-Mobile and Three to offer enhanced 3G mobile broadband services and also prepare for the demands of long-term evolution technology.

George Wareing, Head of Virgin Media Business' Wholesale Markets for Mobile Network, explained that for some time, the firm has been working with mobile operators in their core networks.

However, this project represents Virgin Media Business' first step into mobile backhaul, he noted.

The initiative should help the broadband providers cope with increasing mobile internet usage levels and the demands placed on their networks.

Increasing data consumption is rising risks detracting from mobile broadband service quality unless capacity can be increased.

Mr Wareing said that Virgin Media Business has an advantage from its large consumer broadband network, which has the potential to meet any shortfall.

"We are used to building networks dimensioned for carrying data, as opposed to voice."

Meanwhile, Virgin Media is continuing to roll out its super-fast fibre broadband network across the UK.

Last month, the company revealed that more than six million UK households – around a quarter of the total – are able to sign up for a 100Mb broadband deal.

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